Daily Archives: November 28, 2011

Rum + Fruit = Happy Holidays

Now that Thanksgiving is over (maybe not quite yet–we’re still eating leftover turkey) it is time to get ready for the next big holiday.


We have mixed feelings in our house about Christmas.  It’s too easy to get caught up in all the getting and not think about the giving enough.   The excess and greed in marketing is a little repulsive.  We are always struggling to focus more on the meaning of Christmas and less on the materialism of it.   The boys love it  (of course, they are children!) and I enjoy the celebratory atmosphere in the air (or is that panic?).  I especially love twinkly lights and festive decorations.

The thing that we can all agree on is that Christmas baking is the best.  There are things I make at Christmastime that I do not make any other time of the year.  If I did, it wouldn’t be special anymore, would it?  Every year, I also choose a few new recipes to try because you never know when you’ll find a new family favorite.  A few of these baked goods has one thing in common.

Rum soaked fruit.

Isn’t it pretty?  I just love how all the fruits look like gems.

Yes, I make fruitcake.  And no, I do not use it as a doorstop.  One day, I’ll have to tell you all about my adventures in making fruitcake, but today is not the day.

Today, I am just getting ready to make fruitcake.

And Stollen.

And Pannetone.

And Snowflake Buns.

And maybe Pandoro.

And possibly St. Lucia Buns.

And don’t forget the cookies.

And it might be good for mincemeat too, but I haven’t really tried that yet.

And maybe I’ll just eat some during the most trying moments of the season!

In fact, now that I look at this list, I am not sure that 2 quart jar is enough for me.  I may have to go make some more.

Rum Soaked Fruit

Basically, rum-soaked fruit is good for all kinds of festive baked goods and I like to have a lot on hand to make whatever I feel like making.  It has to sit around for awhile to give the fruit and candied citrus time to absorb the rum, so it’s a good idea to make it at least a few days ahead of time.  It will keep for a few weeks on your counter, as long as you give it a good shake every now and again.  This is a very customizable recipe.  If you don’t like or don’t have one type of fruit, then just put something else in that you do like.  Many people do not seem to like candied fruit peel.  I didn’t either until I started making my own, so if you can’t find it or don’t want to make it, just substitute it with more fruit.  You can also make more or less, depending on what you need.  It’s just 1/2 cup of rum per pound of dried fruit.

4 ounces dried blueberries

8 ounces dried cranberries

8 ounces golden raisins

8 ounces dried cherries

8 ounces dried apricots, chopped

6 ounces candied orange peel, chopped

6 ounces candied grapefruit peel, chopped

1 1/2 cups dark rum

Combine all your ingredients is a large glass jar.  Mine was very pretty with all the layers.  Add the rum and put the cap on.

Shake vigorously to mix up the fruit.  Let sit for at least 48 hours before using.  Give it a shake at least once a day to make sure the rum is being soaked up evenly.

Now, find a recipe and start baking!  (Don’t worry, I’ll give you some ideas later, once my fruit is all ready!)